I listened with interest at the Google Marketing Live 2019 presentation earlier this year to how Google will try to compete head to head with Amazon. Clearly they are afraid they are losing too much market share.
Here’s what I learned at the event:
Google will be making all products shown on its 8 properties shoppable. You will be able to buy items directly from ads on YouTube videos from within the search results and you will be able to choose to buy it through the Google Platform or from the business owner’s website.
Google will be providing customer service when you buy it from them and will allow for simple returns as well as a Google guarantee.
You will be able to use your Google payment profile to pay for merchandise. Additionally, shopping and buying features will soon be appearing in the Google Assistant which appears to have Alexa firmly in its sight.
Google will even be making images found in the image search into shoppable ads. Clearly from this announcement, and very tight integration of selling products into all Google properties, Google does not want to lose out to Amazon on being the premier shopping and buying platform.
So, has it happened so far this year – Google becoming Googazon? Or is this another Google+ fiasco. We’ll just have to wait and see.
We get a chance to check our current Google Ads strategy against your needs.
We get feedback from you on what is trending in your business and in sales so as to rearrange our program if needed.
We get an opportunity to review your budget to keep on track with your marketing plan and revise budgets up or down.
I personally find that when we have regular feedback from the client in regards to how Google Ads is working for them, that performance is better and customer satisfaction with Google pay per click is higher.
My firm manages over $3 million in ad spend for clients in Google Ads yearly. As a result, we see opportunities for improvement in regards to conversion tracking across multiple accounts in diverse industries.
My Tips on Conversion Tracking
Always track website contact forms.
Try to track website phone calls.
Do not change key conversion actions.
Use Position-Based attribution.
Set your cookie for 30 to 60 days.
Add additional conversion actions for promotions.
One of the most important aspects to conversion tracking is to select key conversion actions and to NOT change them in the Google Ads conversion control panel or Google Analytics.
We have recently had several situations where well-meaning marketing staff deleted conversion actions thinking that there would be no harm in doing so, but as a result the smart bidding algorithms in Google Ads were negatively impacted and performance dropped quickly in the account.
I have found that when a customer is changing the conversion actions for promotions and they do not have key conversion actions that are always in the account, bidding algorithms are easily confused and cost per click and cost per conversions will increase, sometimes dramatically.
Assure that if you track website phone calls and email form completions that you always keep these running as conversion actions. Do not move in and out of conversion actions unless you use manual bidding.
Let Smart Bidding Algorithms Do the Heavy Lifting for You
Once you have your conversion action strategy in place, wait to accrue 15 conversions in a 30 day period and then test the use of smart bidding options like maximize conversion or Target CPA bidding for your account.
Make sure to do routine checks at 2 weeks, 30 days, and 60 days to assure that these algorithms are actually delivering results with a cost per conversion that works for your business. Most accounts will benefit from the use of smart bidding based on Google’s machine learning and AI, but not all.
If you are not budget restrained, meaning that you have additional marketing dollars to spend, here is a quick primer on how to know if it makes sense to increase your Google Ads spending budget.
First, look at your campaign level results and sort the data for yesterday. If you did not spend your full budget yesterday, raising your daily budget will have no impact. Make sure to check a few days on top of just yesterday to assure that you are seeing enough results to be sure.
Second, if your program is profitable for you meaning are getting leads which leave room for profit, then the rule of thumb is to increase your ad spend as long as you have a positive ROI or return on investment. Make sure to look at the average cost per conversion when you evaluate what your leads cost versus what you make per lead.
It is important to have an awareness of important facts that are unique for your business such as one out of every ten leads makes a purchase or becomes a regular customer and regular customers typically will stay five years with us and have a lifetime value of X.
I do not recommend raising your ad spend budget without thought to assure that Google Ads is an investment in your growth and not an expense.
That being said for accounts that have taken the approach of increasing the ad spend without a limit while there is still positive ROI, the results can be absolutely, positively, mind boggling and wonderful.
In Google Ads, you can compete effectively against large competitors who are spending a lot of money on Google Ads with a few creative approaches.
First, consider taking the gloves off. We will routinely target competitor names in very competitive spaces. Our ad text will show dynamic keyword insertion and phrases in the ad text like (Competitor’s Name) Too Expensive? Check out (Your Company Name) and then showcase features. Similar to (Competitor Name) is also another great way to get traffic and bleed off prospects who may have never known about you and were searching for your competitor.
Be watchful about the time of day your ads show. If you are competing against a company with a very large advertising budget, consider bidding down slow times of the day or times that do not typically convert for you and show your ads at your regular cost per click in peak times. This strategy keeps your name out there but focuses budget in peak decision making times.
Consider Display advertising and use In Market as a setting. This will show your ads in the Display Network and targets readers or browsing prospects that are actively looking for your competitor or services you offer.
If you are looking to boost your Google Ads exposure and be more competitive in your marketplace, I invite you to visit our website to find out more about McCord Web Services and what we do.
Site reputation – that’s what hackers want to steal from you for their own personal gain. Don’t think that you need to just be using WordPress to become a victim. I’ve seen regular HTML website fall prey to hack attacks too.
It typically all starts with your user name and password being stolen. Hackers create a phishing page that looks legit that they hope you will click and then enter in your user name and password into. The best defense is to never click links in an email and if you do click a link, never share login information no matter how valid a site or form looks.
Instead, go to your login address using your browser and access your account without clicking a link. You will typically find that there is not a problem with your account or access. But the email you had received had some dire notice that you were going to lose access or your account would be closed. Be suspicious of everything.
Troy Hunt has it right in his article on how and why hackers want to get into your site and steal your credentials. His article is worth the read to allow you to make sure to stay safe. You will be amazed at the extent hackers will use, to mask their presence in an effort to steal your credentials and then your website reputation.